January writing wrap-up.

So, January 2020.

That was a hell of a year, wasn’t it?

The new year has started off in the fast lane. Lots of stuff going on at Ward Manor, and as you’ve likely guessed a good bit of that involves Star Trek in some flavor or another. My consulting duties with CBS continue apace, and a good chunk of the month was devoted to reviewing or weighing in on assorted things in various stages of development. This primarily includes material from both Simon & Schuster and IDW Publishing but a couple of other things wormed their way into the mix. Lots of sausage being made, you know.

Meanwhile, on my own writing front, things are in a bit of a “moving things around the board” mode. Here’s what moved around in January:

Agents of Influence – A new Star Trek original series novel. I got to look over the galley pages (basically, a digital version of what the book’s going to look like when it’s printed and bound) and hunt for any lingering errors or last-minute things I needed to change. I returned my final updates to my editor on January 17th. Just this past weekend, I was finally able to share the book’s description. So I’ve got that going for me, which is nice. It’s officially slated for publication on June 9th. More info once I’m allowed to share.

Don’t Miss Out On These January Star Trek Books” – A rundown of January’s offerings from various licensing partners involved with Star Trek publishing. This article was published on January 20th.

Short Story for Upcoming Horror Anthology – A story Kevin and I wrote for It Came from the Multiplex: 80s Midnight Chillers. To be published by Hex Publishers, this will be a celebration of ghost and horror stories as inspired by 1980s cheezy, low-budget B-movie awesomeness. The concept sounded so insanely fun Kevin and I could not say no when we were invited to contribute. We returned our copyedited manuscript with our (very minor) notes back to our editor on January 21st. Also last month, they rolled out the cover and the table of contents along with the roster of contributing authors. Didja see it? The book is scheduled for publication in September.

More Fun with Star Trek AdventuresBack in October, I turned in a few revisions for the material I wrote for the first of two upcoming reference books. I finished edits on content for the first book early last month, and I’m presently working on material for the second book. Both of these are tentatively scheduled for publication at different points in late 2020, but I don’t have any firm dates just yet. Neither book has been formally announced yet, either, so don’t tell anyone I mentioned this to you, okay?

Short Story for Pangaea III, an Upcoming Science Fiction Anthology – Regular followers know that Kevin and I contributed a story to the first Pangaea anthology, and Kevin went solo for a story included in its sequel, Pangaea II: SuperContinent Boogalo (I may have that title wrong). The formula’s a bit different this time, as instead of us all writing separate tales we all will be feeding a larger narrative in something resembling a round-robin format…but with extra chaos sprinkled in for flavor. Kevin’s taking point on this one, and I expect we’ll be meeting in the coming days to hash out a few things. More details to come!

Other stuff in the pipeline:

Star Trek: Kirk Fu – A Guide to Starfleet’s Most Feared Martial Art. I received word back from my editor at Insight Editions in late July the final layouts and everything else for this bad boy have been approved by CBS! We appear locked in for a publication date of March 3rd, 2020. In addition to the cover, you can also check out some preview pages as well as the first full-blown review! The book will be in stores on March 3, so I suggest you get started stretching now.

IncrediBuilds – Star Trek: Klingon Bird-of-Prey – Another wooden model/book set from Insight Editions’ IncrediBuilds imprint. This is my fifth project for this series and it was as much fun as the previous entries. As before, I wrote the book that gets packaged with the neat little eco-friendly wooden model that you assemble without needing glue or tape or anything else. In addition to presenting info on the BoP, from “inside the universe” as well as real-world look, the book will also include tips on painting and customizing the assembled model. It’s due out on March 23rd.

Another Tie-In Project – I can’t really describe anything about this one without giving away hints as to what it might be. It’s definitely an interesting endeavor – one I’m pursuing with a friend and fellow writer. We’ve been told the project’s official start date has been pushed to the spring, which gives us plenty of time to start locking things down and work with the client to fine-tune what they want. Until a formal announcement is made the only thing I can say is that this is a slice of pure fanboy fun. Stay tuned!

Wealth, Wayward Teens, and Wards: A Life of Crime Brings No Rewards!” – An essay Kevin and I concocted for Zlonk! Zok! Zowie! The Subterranean Blue Grotto Guide to Batman ’66 Season One, a new collection of essays focusing on the first season of the 1966 Batman TV series. Edited by Jim Beard, each essay/writer takes a look at a different story from the show’s first year, which mostly means each of us taking a 2-part episode. Kevin and I drew “The Joker Goes to School” and “He Meets His Match, the Grisly Ghoul,” which features Caesar Romero’s second appearance as the Clown Prince of Crime. At last report, we’re still waiting to hear about a publication date. Stay tuned for more info as it becomes available.

Superhero Novella Project – As announced back on February 21st, I’m teaming up with friends and fellow word pushers Russ Colchamiro, Mary Fan, and Aaron Rosenberg–they of Crazy 8 Press–to make with some superhero shenanigans. We’re still a ways out on this one, with a projected publication sometime in 2021, but hey! It’s something new for the project board, so into the list it goes. Obviously, we’re only in the very earliest stages of this thing’s gestation, and more details will be forthcoming as appropriate.

Possible future projects:

Still Another Unidentified Tie-In Project – This one is now officially listed as “in limbo” until further notice. I can’t say it’s canceled because there’s still a contract involved and I’ve already been paid a portion of the money, but it’s been all quiet on every front so far as trying to get this thing to move forward. After submitting a revised outline to my editor over a year ago, I’ve been stuck since then while we await a response from the licensor. I’ve attempted to follow up a few times in the intervening months, but so far I’ve had no luck. I guess they’ll find me when they’re ready. It’s not like I’m drowning in free time or anything, but I’d really like to get on with this one. Here’s hoping.

Original SF novel concept – Something I’d started a while back, refreshed some older notes and added some new ones. This one’s been on the back burner for a while because…well…look up at all that other stuff. I’d like to get it to a point that I feel comfortable approaching at least one editor with it. I guess we’ll see.

Original e-Book concept – I’ve been pondering an idea for a new series – something akin to the “men’s adventure” style books I loved back in the 80s and 90s. It would be a setting for which I could write shorter tales – novellas, likely – for e-Book distribution. It would be something of an SF-ish/action bent, with (I hope) lots of humor. Not quite campy, but definitely lighter in tone. This is still very rough at the moment, but it’s something I’d really like to get into once I get some free time (HAH! HAH AGAIN!).

Hey, February. ‘sup?

Lay it on me.

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